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Pink Skunk Clownfish Care & Info | A Rosy Reef Dweller

Looking for a clownfish for your saltwater aquarium? There are more species to choose from than just your typical “Nemo”! One of our favorites here at FantaSEA is the pink skunk clownfish, a semi-peaceful species that sports a pretty rosy tint.

Below, you’ll find everything you need to know about pink skunk clownfish, including where they’re from, how to care for them, and what they eat!

Name (Common, Scientific)Pink skunk clownfish, pink anemonefish, Amphiprion perideraion
Minimum tank size20 gallons
Minimum group size2
Temperature74-82 °F
Salinity1.020-1.025
pH8.1-8.4
Difficulty levelEasy to intermediate

Pink skunk clownfish description & natural habitat

Description

The pink skunk clownfish is a small species of anemonefish that rarely attains more than 4″ in length. Unlike what its name suggests, it’s more of a peach in color than pink. It sports two bright white stripes: one across the back, and one behind the head.

This fish belongs to what’s referred to as the skunk clownfish complex, a group of very similar-looking species within the genus Amphiprion.

Some other skunk clownfish are also commonly kept in the aquarium:

  • Orange skunk clownfish (Amphiprion sandaracinos)
  • Skunk clownfish (Amphiprion akallopisos)

All three species look very similar, but you can tell today’s subject, the pink skunk clownfish, apart by the vertical stripe running across its gill covers.

Tip: Pink skunk clowns are among a bunch of species of anemonefish in which the females are much larger than the males. This makes it easy to tell them apart.

Natural habitat

The pink skunk clownfish is naturally found in the Pacific Ocean, specifically around Southeast Asia, Australia, and Melanesia. Here, it inhabits coral reefs and lagoons with a depth of up to 65ft (occasionally deeper).

Like other anemonefish, the pink skunk clownfish maintains a symbiotic relationship with certain species of anemones (hence the name!). It prefers Heteractis magnifica and H. crispa, sometimes sharing the latter with the larger Clarkii anemonefish. It’ll also go for Macrodactyla doreensis and Stichodactyla gigantea.

The IUCN Red List considers Amphiprion perideraion to be a species of Least Concern, meaning it’s not currently threatened in the wild.

Pink skunk clownfish underwater photo (close-up)
Photographed by the FantaSEA Team in the wild (Gulf of Thailand)

Pink skunk clownfish aquarium

Although pink skunk clowns are among the smaller anemonefish, they are rather active. For this reason, we recommend an aquarium with a volume of at least 20 gallons if you’d like to keep a pair.

As always, the tank should be fully cycled and stable before you introduce any livestock. Weekly water changes are necessary to keep the water quality high.

You can decorate using live rock and other items to help make your clownfish feel safe. A small extra powerhead may be helpful, as this species does appreciate a good flow level and well-oxygenated water.

Anemone or no anemone?

So what’s up with the anemone thing? Do your clownfish really need one to thrive?

The short answer is no. An anemonefish like the pink skunk clownfish doesn’t explicitly require an anemone to survive. In the wild, the anemone offers the fish protection, while it provides nutrients in the form of poop and keeps the anemone clean in return.

In the aquarium, giving your clownfish an anemone allows you to observe its fascinating natural behavior, but unfortunately it’s not always feasible to do so. Anemones of the genus Heteractis, which the pink skunk clownfish prefers, are difficult to care for and can cause major problems if things don’t work out.

Want to give your clownfish something to host but think Heteractis might be a bit much? Luckily, in the absence of their first choices, they’ll pair up with other anemones and sometimes even corals.

Try the bubble tip anemone, or even soft corals like Sarcophyton. These are less challenging to keep alive, but still help your anemonefish feel safe.

Pink skunk clownfish in the aquarium.

Compatibility

If you’ve got any experience with anemonefish, you’ll be relieved to know that, unlike seriously feisty and territorial species like the maroon clown, pink skunk clownfish are among the less aggressive in their genus.

They’ll defend a territory and can be nippy, especially if there’s an anemone present, but it’s usually possible to keep neighborhood relations under control by offering enough space and not overstocking the tank.

Given their semi-peaceful nature, you’ve got plenty of options when it comes to tankmates for pink skunk clownfish. Keep in mind that it’s recommended to avoid keeping them with most other anemonefish in order to avoid serious territorial squabbles.

Peaceful fish like firefish, gobies, dwarf angels, and many similar species will work well.

As for how many pink skunk clowns you should get, they’re usually kept in pairs. You can get a male (small) and female (large), or opt for two males—one will soon turn into a female.

Groups are an option in larger tanks, though the dominant pair may bully the non-breeding males.

Tip: Pink skunk clownfish are reef safe. The only issue you may run into if a good host is lacking is that they can try to go for various corals, irritating their potential hosts with their movement in the process. This causes the polyps to close.

Pink skunk clownfish diet

Like other anemonefish, pink skunk clowns are planktivorous. In the wild, they feed on a variety of small bits: crustaceans, worms, algae, and anything they can snatch from their host anemone.

In the aquarium, this species isn’t picky about food. For the best results, offer a varied diet of high-quality flake or pellet food, frozen foods like mysis and brine shrimp, nori sheets, and algae tablets.

You can feed twice a day. Be sure to remove any uneaten foods to prevent them from fouling the water.

Pink skunk clownfish hiding in a coral

Breeding pink skunk clownfish

For many of the fish we discuss, this section is short: it has never been bred in captivity.

Not anemonefish! Members of the genus Amphiprion, including the pink skunk clownfish, will reproduce in captivity. And you don’t need a high-tech breeding facility either, it can be done by (patient) hobbyists.

There is actually scientific literature available on the raising of pink skunk clown larvae. A 2008 study, for example, mentions the following in terms of feeding (which is the most complicated part):

  • Rotifers for the first 11 days
  • Rotifers + copepods from day 12
  • Only copepods from day 15
  • Only pellet food from day 59

If you’d like to try your hand at anemonefish breeding, check out our full guides on clownfish eggs and raising clownfish larvae.

Conclusion

Pink skunk clownfish are an excellent choice for semi-experienced aquarists looking for something a little less “mainstream” than the standard ocellaris clownfish. They’re beautiful to look at, mostly peaceful, and endlessly interesting to watch.

Looking to set up your own (clownfish) aquarium but not sure where to start? FantaSEA Aquariums can help. Contact us with your ideas so we can design, build and maintain your tank for you!

Sources & further reading

Hattori, A. (1995). Coexistence of two anemonefishes, Amphiprion clarkii and A. perideraion, which utilize the same host sea anemone. Environmental biology of fishes, 42, 345-353.

Ho, Y. S., Chen, C. M., Chen, W. Y., & Chang, W. B. (2008). Embryo Development and Larval Rearing of Pink Clownfish (Amphiprion perideraion). 臺灣水產學會刊, 35(1), 75-85.

Photo of author

Marijke Puts

Hey! I'm Marijke, FantaSEA's resident blog writer. I'm a full-time pop science author, part-time PADI diver and snorkeler, and have been keeping fish since I was a kid. When I'm not writing fish care guides, you can usually find me underwater or trying to figure out how to fit more tanks into my house.

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